Weekend Inspiration: Paul Davies

Fascinated by the work of Paul Davies, an Australian architectural-landscape painter and sculptor. Can’t help but to find some parallels between his work and Scott’s, who both seem to have the ability to create “dream-like sequences”, through the manipulation of layers, color and texture.

In the words of Paul himself:

Much of this work has been sourced from my recent visits to America and Europe. During these visits I examined The Eames House and Schindler House, both in Los Angeles, Frank Sinatra’s holiday retreat in Palm Springs, The Bauhaus in Dessau and The Villa Savoye in Poissy. I have also visited the modernist buildings in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, by Van Mollyvan, who spent time training under Le Corbusier. Gaining access to these sites often takes many requests as some of the buildings are privately owned. I was interested in these examples of international landscapes and architecture because of the striking, atmospheric qualities I could capture when photographing them. To amplify these images, I collaged them with sourced landscape photographs, of North America’s West Coast, by Ansel Adams. Adams’s photographs, with their crisp cinematic quality, allowed me to play with the composition and to stage dramatic, non- existent scenes. The photographic images reminded me of typical holiday postcards and I have attempted to capture this in my work by intensifying the perspectives and altering the colour ways.

Although the scenes and structures that inhibit them seem picturesque, in reality, these iconic homes can often feel austere and isolated. My work investigates these images as portraits of space, devoid of human form, inviting the viewer to generate their own emotional response to the painting. The absence of people in my work encourages the viewer to wander uninterrupted through the space and appreciate the built and non-built qualities of the surrounding environment. Through my practice I have attempted to explore this concept of isolation by incorporating empty swimming pools in the picture. Throughout my school years I swam competitively and was fascinated by the vacant feeling of the outdoor pools when they were drained for winter. I recently visited David Hockney’s underwater swimming pool mural, painted in the 1980’s for The Roosevelt Hotel in Los Angeles. Hockney’s work addresses issues of space and location, and his swimming pool design is a brilliant 3D version of these concepts. This year I designed a version of Hockney’s mural, for my Father’s swimming pool, and the experience was helped by the understanding of space I learnt from my Sculpture study at NSW College Of Fine Arts. By creating my paintings devoid of people, “emptying” the swimming pools and “burning” the forests, I am attempting to convey this dislocation to the viewer and raise environmental concerns that face us today.

Posted by B3PO

10 Comments Leave A Comment


Gijs says:

May 15, 2012 at 7:29 am

astonishing work! thanks for the post!
and good job with that post about those awesome apps: image blender and grid lens. I’m really enjoying those!

keep it coming!


Preslava says:

July 26, 2012 at 10:33 pm

Robbie & Mandi, You have done it again, you have given us another wnfoerdul grandchild.And baby makes three. We love you all and she is simply beautiful. I am looking forward to seeing more pictures.